When I’m studying scripture, I’m often guilty of expecting God to do a magic trick right before my eyes. I skim over a lot of really valuable passages because words don’t pop off the page, followed by a flash of fire and a cloud of smoke. Reading God’s word used to be all about how I felt; I wanted to feel something, and when I didn’t, I usually decided that God wasn’t in the mood to speak to me that day.
When I study the Bible this way, it’s never boring and it always applies, because the whole book is about Him. And when we learn more about our Creator, we ultimately learn more about ourselves. When we hear God’s promises, we begin to understand our position. When we get a glimpse at His love, we get to live differently.
God’s desire for us is to enter into a relationship with Him, to worship Him, and to serve Him. In order to do those things, we must really know Him first. In every relationship, we make the choice to learn about the other person. If we don’t, that relationship usually doesn’t flourish and grow. He’s done His part in knowing us, after all, He created us. The best part is that He still wants to hear about us from us; from our perspective because we want to share our lives with Him. But it can’t be a one way street. We have to stop looking to God for the answer and start looking at Him as THE answer.
If you’re like me, you’re probably looking for something black and white right now, possibly a check-list of some sort? I got you, boo. This isn’t set-in-stone and certainly not a one-size-fits-all kinda thing, but doing these things each day does help me get my mind in the right place to worship and praise, no matter how I’m feeling.
After I read a chapter in a book, I do a short daily devotional with a place for self-reflection. This is my me time; before I get into the Bible. It gives a chance to understand how I’m feeling, to look at some things that are on my heart and mind, and to get those out in the open. I find that when I do that, I’m able to see the messages from the Bible for what they are; words from God. I’m not spending my time trying to solve the mystery of Olivia’s Life each time I read a verse. I can look at the verses and how they apply to my relationship with God as a whole.
Some days, I do better than others. I still believe in and look for God’s magic shows, but in much different ways. I know now that every passing smile in the grocery store, every heart-felt apology where a fight could have started, every sunset, and every day is God’s magic that He created because He’s good, not because I’m deserving.